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Features are great but having a way to use them without typing cryptic commands is even better. Android is, always has been, and always will be jam-packed with software features. Even the most bare-bones software as seen on something like the Pixel phone will have features that you never knew you needed until you did need them. And it will also have features you didn't even know existed because they are hidden without any sort of user interface to actually use them. Thankfully, Android 11 brings two of these very useful features to the light with a proper — and easy — way to use them: screen recording and wireless ADB (Android Debug Bridge, a way to communicate with a computer). You've probably seen something on the internet about these "new" features, but what most people don't know or remember is that neither is new at all. That's a failure on Google's part; when something users or developers (or both) want is put into Android, not having a way to easily use them means maybe Google shouldn't have bothered in the first place, ya know? Enough of the old, let's look at the new. You can now record what happens on your screen, complete with touchpoint markers and audio, by simply tapping an icon in the quick settings bar. Previously, you needed to connect your phone to a computer and type out a command or find an app that could replicate the command on the phone itself. Neither is a bad thing, and it doesn't appear that either way will disappear. The biggest change from what I can tell is that now you can do it without the typing or a third-party app. Simply adding a third choice to how you can record your screen, especially one so easy to use, is what we love to see. Wireless ADB is yet another new feature that's not new. But if you think you might ever need to use it, thank whatever God(s) you believe in that Google finally made it easy to use. With Android 11, you toggle a virtual switch and enter in some network details. It will be even easier when Android 11 is final and QR code scanning is implemented. Previously, you needed to connect with a cable to authorize an encryption key, get the IP of your Android device after unplugging it, make sure ADB is in your computer's command PATH, then type the commands to enable a TCP port via ADB. Finally, you could connect your computer to your phone with a special ADB command that included the port you forwarded in the previous step. Granted, after you worked your way through it once, it wasn't difficult, but compare it to tapping a switch or scanning a QR code and you'll see why the people who wanted or needed wireless debugging are so happy. Follow this thread on OUR FORUM.

Every month, Microsoft releases new Windows 10 updates that are designed to fix security vulnerability, fix bugs and performance issues, and add new features. Unfortunately, due to coding bugs, the size of the Windows user base, and the varied hardware it is installed on, there are always bugs encountered after new updates are released. Some of these bugs, though, are critical as they could break features, drivers, Windows, or the device itself if you have incompatible software or the update itself is botched. For example, a recent Windows 10 update for November 2019 and May 2019 Update computers is causing dreaded Blue Screen of Death (BSOD) and data loss. Others reported a wide range of issues, including broken Bluetooth, internet connectivity issues, reduced performance, freezes and installation issues, and other problems. Even worse, in February 2020, Windows 10 KB4532693 was released to fix security issues with Edge and other core components, but several users encountered a file deletion bug caused by an incorrect user profile. Fortunately, Microsoft allows Windows 10 Home, Pro, and Enterprise customers to control when and how Windows 10 installs monthly and half-yearly updates. If a driver or update causes problems, you can delay updates, or you can uninstall it and block Windows from downloading it again. The only time we suggest that you install updates immediately is when Microsoft releases fixes on Patch Tuesday for know vulnerabilities that are being actively exploited or that require immediate attention. In this guide, we'll walk you through the steps to control and manage Windows Updates to delay or block a particular update that you don't find suited for your device or until you know that the update is not causing problems. For those who want to completely pause new updates until you know they are not problematic, Windows 10 Home, Pro, and Enterprise customers can do so via the settings app. For Windows 10 Home users, the pause feature works for only 28 days and 7 days in the preview builds. On the other hand, Windows 10 Pro and Enterprise users can delay the update for more than 28 days via the Settings app and as well as Group Policy.If a specific update is causing issues with your device, you can pause it with Microsoft's "Show or hide updates" troubleshooter. You can download and run the "Show or hide updates" troubleshooter from here. Once the app is downloaded, launch it and hide the update that you don't want to install again. Learn how to prevent Windows Update from running your day on OUR FORUM.

Ubuntu is the world’s most popular open-source desktop operating system, and we think this is our best release to date. Ubuntu 20.04 LTS is an enterprise-grade, secure, cost-effective operating system for organizations and home users. Before I summarise the changes in this release, let’s address something I’ve seen discussed in the wider desktop Linux community; there is a perception that the desktop is no longer a priority for us. Nothing could be farther from the truth, and here’s why; the people who use Ubuntu Desktop are often passionate people making huge waves in their industry. They want to build the next big thing, such as AI/ML, self-driving cars, public cloud services, and container orchestration. These have all emerged while we’ve been working on the Linux desktop, and all of these innovations have driven waves of Ubuntu Desktop adoption in the enterprise. As a consequence, Ubuntu was the first choice in these new domains. So even though Ubuntu is a popular community story, which we still celebrate today with emerging desktop remixes of Ubuntu such as Ubuntu Cinnamon, Ubuntu Deepin, and Ubuntu Lumina, it is also a significant part of how we have moved to the mainstream. By placing the very best of open-source in the hands of Ubuntu Desktop users, the Linux desktop is where all the major waves of tech innovation have come from in recent years. This is why we are committed to delivering a first-class workstation experience to fuel continued innovation and keep Ubuntu at the vanguard.  You can’t miss the refreshed Yaru theme, from boot splash to the desktop. For most operating system vendors, having a distinctive look for the operating system is important in establishing their brand. With that in mind, Canonical hosted a design sprint in January with members of the Yaru community team, Ubuntu desktop, and design teams. Yaru was first introduced in Ubuntu 18.10, so if you’re upgrading from Ubuntu 18.04 LTS, this will be the first time you are going to see this bold, new, and unmistakably Ubuntu, look. Ubuntu now defaults to checking the integrity of the medium in use when booting into live sessions. This can be skipped by hitting Ctrl-C. We’ve enabled this because failed installs due to corrupt downloads of installation media are one of the most common error conditions that users encounter. For some years now, each Ubuntu release has received a new animal mascot. The Canonical design team typically furnishes the theme with a freshly crafted creature, and this release is no different. However, this time, she came with a name. Meet Felicity, the Ubuntu 20.04 LTS mascot. Felicity features in the default wallpaper, as is customary on new releases of Ubuntu desktop. However, our enthusiastic and creative users enjoy tweaking the stock experience. We provided SVG files to the community, earlier in the cycle, which gave them the opportunity to create their own remixes. Take a peek at the thread over on Ubuntu Discourse. For more images and a download link, please visit OUR FORUM.

Some users are reporting (Blue Screen of Death (BSOD) errors after installing Windows 10 KB4549951 update, which is the cumulative update that also causes data loss for a group of users. On April 14, Microsoft started rolling out Windows 10 KB4549951 for version 1909 and 1903. This patch was supposed to bring a number of security fixes and it was also supposed to be a minor release with focus entirely security-related fixes, but KB4549951 leads to dreaded Blue Screen of Death and system failure. If you’re getting a blue screen on your PC after applying recent Windows Update, it’s not just you and the issue appears to be widespread. The Blue screen does give users general stop error codes, but these stop errors are complex and there’s no specific pattern, which makes it essentially impossible to understand the cause of the mess. It’s common to see these error codes as a result of damaged installation files, drivers, and third-party security software compatibility issues with Windows 10. Some users are also reporting a loop of Blue Screen of Death and complete system failure. Until Microsoft issues an advisory or a hotfix, your best bet is to uninstall the Windows 10 April 2020 cumulative update and it’s worth doing, even if it means that you won’t have the latest security fixes. If you’re unable to access the desktop, you’ll need to get into Safe Mode to make those changes happen. First and foremost, hold the Shift key while clicking Restart and get around the boot menu, and then go through Troubleshoot > Advanced options > Startup settings and click on ‘Restart’. If that wasn’t bad enough, the update also appears to delete or move files for some users. In some cases, users are reporting that their documents, pictures, files, and personal settings were removed after updating their devices to Windows 10 KB4549951. This appears to be a return of an old issue where Windows 10 boots with a temporary user profile that removes settings, some files, and icons from the desktop. “This update is a disaster. It deleted my files, pictures, documents saved in system drive, and as well as my apps which I downloaded from Windows Store,” one user wrote in our comments. “Windows 10 is unable to locate system default user account after installation of KB4549951. This failure has occurred for the last 3 cumulative updates so they were each uninstalled and hidden,” another user noted. “Data lost after upgrading [to] KB4549951. All files in Documents more than 1 week old are deleted without notification or moving to the Recycle Bin. No restore available, no help, no live chat, no nothing,” writes a frustrated user. “My system automatically updated on the 19th of April. I lost some important word files from my university. And a folder. I have looked on the temporary folders and I have tried to uninstall the update but they do not appear,” another Windows 10 owner said. Get caught up by visiting OUR FORUM.

Huawei Technologies Co. is emerging as the runaway winner in China’s $170 billion effort to build out its fifth-generation wireless networks, part of a concerted effort by Beijing to seize the lead in a key technology from the U.S. while rebooting a virus-stricken economy. Since the beginning of the year, Huawei has secured 28.4 billion yuan ($4 billion) worth of 5G equipment orders from the country’s largest carrier, China Mobile Ltd., beating out competitors like Ericsson AB and ZTE Corp. to win more than half of the 5G contracts awarded by the operator during the period, according to an analysis of procurement data by Bloomberg News. Huawei is relying on its home market more than ever, at a time its growth has all but evaporated. The 5G contract haul shows Huawei is benefiting from the domestic market and building its telecommunications expertise despite the Trump administration’s blacklisting last year. Beijing has forcefully defended Huawei, and the country’s three wireless operators -- all state-backed -- have added support through network contracts. While China has spent years striving for leadership in 5G, the effort took on greater urgency after the coronavirus led to the nation’s first economic contraction in decades. In a meeting with senior officials in March, Chinese President Xi Jinping singled out the technology’s importance for rebooting the economy. Weeks later, the country’s telecom regulator said China will “make every effort” to hasten the expansion of 5G coverage. “The focus on buildouts, handsets, and other metrics miss the fact that 5G will be a platform where innovative Chinese companies such as Alibaba, Tencent, Baidu, and a host of new tech unicorns will be able to build new applications and use cases,” said Paul Triolo, head of global technology policy at Eurasia Group. “Beijing wants Chinese companies to lead in this race to innovate on top of 5G.” China is entrusting Huawei to galvanize 5G tech, a cornerstone of a national “new infrastructure” blueprint that covers nascent technologies from the Internet of Things and autonomous driving to surveillance and factory automation. An early and successful rollout could help solidify Huawei’s position as a world leader in 5G. More deals are on the horizon. China has earmarked 1.2 trillion yuan to build 5G networks in the next five years, directly creating more than 3 million jobs in related sectors, according to the China Academy of Information and Communications Technology, a government thinks tank. IDC telecom analyst Cui Kai said 5G investment will continue to climb and peak in 2022 or 2023. This year, China’s three state-owned telecom carriers will spend a total of 180 billion yuan on 5G-related projects, including base stations and smartphones. China Telecom and China Unicom still have to announce bidding results. Learn more by visiting OUR FORUM.

The stolen records of 20 million users of a popular Android app store have been published online by a hacker who claims to have 19 million more. Not all app stores are the same. Android users have access to the official Google Play Store, complete with nearly three million (2,870,985) apps available for download. Then there are the manufacturer app stores, of which the best known are probably the Samsung Galaxy Store and the Huawei AppGallery. Finally, we arrive at the third-party app stores, the ones not pre-installed by the smartphone vendor nor operated by Google. Among the biggest of these, with a claimed global userbase of 150 million and a million apps, is Aptoide. It is Aptoide that would appear to have been breached by a hacker who claims to have stolen 39 million customer records and has published details of 20 million of them, including login emails and hashed passwords, on a popular hacker forum. Aptoide was founded in 2011 and has quickly grown thanks to using a decentralized app store model where every user can have their own individually managed app store. The Aptoide app itself is open source and generally well-received, acting as an app discovery platform. It is also thriving, as far as third-party app stores go: one million apps and seven billion downloads are claimed by Aptoide. Cybersecurity folk, myself included, often warn against the use of third-party app stores because of the potential for malware distribution. Aptoide, though, has always been keen to emphasize how safe it is. The app description states that "all the apps are checked for viruses, and we perform extra security tests to ensure your Android device is always safe." The Aptoide home page claims that "recent studies prove that Aptoide is the safest Android app store," although I was unable to find any link to those studies. In the research and development section, however, there was mention of the AppSentinel anti-malware system project and a reputation systems knowledgebase called TrustChain. On April 19, the Have I Been Pwned (HIBP) database added an entry for Aptoide. This stated that the app store had suffered a data breach and that 20 million customer records had subsequently been shared online in a popular hacker forum. HIBP states the breach date as being April 13 and gives the precise number of compromised accounts as 20,012,235. You want to know more, stop by OUR FORUM, and we will share the rest with you.